Top ChoiceSouthern US in Columbia


To rub elbows with state lawmakers, attorneys and other people wearing suits, pull up a chair at Bourbon's whiskey bar. The selection of more than 350 mostly bourbon, rye and Tennessee whiskeys tends to pair well...

Top ChoiceBrewery in Columbia

Hunter-Gatherer Brewery at Curtiss-Wright Hangar

The raddest new thing in Columbia is this old airplane hangar that's been converted into a 13,000-sq-ft brewery, taproom and observation deck overlooking the airport (craft beers from $5). There's food too, most...

Modern American in Columbia

Motor Supply Co

Not only did Motor Supply Co flip a former auto-part shop into a restaurant long before most hipsters were born, it was doing farm-to-table fare before the term existed – since 1989, in fact. Heroic local farms...

Zoo in Columbia

Riverbanks Zoo & Garden

Considered one of America's top zoos, Riverbanks regularly wins awards for design, animal care and breeding of endangered species. Popular exhibits include the reptile aquarium, which houses species like...

Bar in Columbia


Inspired by the variety of entertainment provided in a 1900s vaudeville house that once stood in its place, this venue triples as a gastropub, game center and boutique bowling alley (bowling lane $25 to $40; shoe...

Farm in Columbia

City Roots

An 3.5-acre organic, sustainable farm just southeast of Columbia. Produce, herbs, flowers and mushrooms are all grown here, and there is also got a farm store on-site.

Cultural in Columbia

Indie Grits Festival

Columbia's best time is a South by Southwest-style three-day party celebrating art, tech, film, food and music around the city.

Barbecue in Columbia

Southern Belly BBQ

Pulled pork reimagined! Normally when you hit a Carolina BBQ spot, the pulled pork comes one way: pulled! But this innovative joint offers eight different sloppy-as-hell versions (such as the D'Jango, with...

Historic Building in Columbia

Robert Mills House & Gardens

Robert Mills is best known for designing the Washington Monument, and he's also the architect of this Classical Revival town house. The restored, stately edifice, filled with period furniture and dripping with...

Museum in Columbia

Columbia Museum of Art

One of South Carolina's most impressive collections of European and American art, the CMA was undergoing a $5- million permanent gallery expansion at the time of research. The expanded collection, which includes...

Bar in Columbia

Art Bar

If it's getting late in Columbia and you're thinking of calling it a night, go to Art Bar instead. This is a quintessential second-wind kinda place with its ubiquitous twinkly lights, junkyard sculptures and...

Coffee in Columbia


Belly up to the framed chalkboard menu of seven or so daily caffeine-delivery options from Peru, Colombia, Papua New Guinea, Rwanda and the like at this cozy and artsy Five Points coffeehouse. It uses the...

Microbrewery in Columbia

Hunter-Gatherer Brewery

True to its name, this microbrewery is all taxidermy and lodgy hardwoods. It produces five beers (pints $5 to $6) at any given time, plus one cask-conditioned selection, and offers up salads and hearty pub grub...

Museum in Columbia

South Carolina State Museum

A Smithsonian-affiliated museum exhibiting collections on the history, culture and geography of South Carolina. Kids will gawk at 'Finn,' the megalodon replica, and there's also a planetarium and a 4-D movie...